At Least Twice A Week

Archive for the ‘Bread’ Category

This bread was our Martha Monday project for the week.  Thanks to Megan at Megan’s Cookin’ for picking this Chocolate Marble Bread.  Since I’m trying to do more baking, I was glad when I saw this choice.  I’ve always made quick breads but never made a marbled one.  I was excited to try.

I didn’t put the ganache on the top and I don’t think we missed out.  I was surprised because I did expect it to have a pound cake consistency but the batter was incredibly light.   It was no harder to put together than any other cake.  That being said though I did mix too much batter into the chocolate and considered making it entirely chocolate but was talked out of that by the family. 

I plan on putting it in my keep file.  Everyone liked it, Geneva had it with ice cream and Hubby said it was great because it wasn’t too sweet.   For me though, I think I will have another piece along with a big, hot cup of coffee.

I tried my had a bread again this weekend.  I am loving the excitment of watching the yeast foam and the anticipation of waiting for the dough to double in size and being able to knead it and really be a part of the process of what you are making.  It is an incredible experience.

This recipe came from the February issue of Martha Stewart Living.  And as I said before, my experience with bread has never had good results but this seemed pretty easy.  My only draw back was the pan that I used was longer than what is called for and the bread came out a little denser than what I though it should have but the taste was great.

Since I don’t know what normal bread making is all about, I will go through this one.  Mix two packets of dry, active yeast with 1/2 cup of water and a teaspoon of honey.  Stir to dissolve yeast.  In a large bowl whisk together flour and salt.  When the yeast foams, pour that along with the rest of the water,  3 more tablespoons of honey and some melted butter into your mixer with a dough hook. 

Add 3 cups of the flour mixture, then after that is incorporated add the rest of the flour, one cup at a time.  That is it.  Then you knead it for about 5 minutes, put it in a buttered bowl and let the dough do its thing. 

When it has doubled in size, flatten it out, cut it in half and put it in your bread pans and ‘paint’ with melted butter.  Let it rise again, then bake.

It really wasn’t a difficult thing to do and the house smelled fantastic from the yeast and the baking and everything.  I was so excited that it worked.

I had help in the ‘painting’ process.  You have to start teaching them young if you want them to enjoy it!

I am going to try the cinnamon raisin today.

Ok, I’ll admit it.  I am now a blog junkie.  I subscribe, I read and some times I go back and read them again.  But the most important thing is I learn from them and I am trying the recipes and crafts that I see other blogger’s doing.  It’s a new dimension in my life.

Yesterday, Geneva and I made Focaccia.  I have always wanted to learn how to bake bread so I jumped right in.  I found this recipe on Alexis Stewart’s blog ‘Whatever’.  Yes, Martha Stewart’s daughter, she cooks too.  The recipe actually comes from Saveur.

I was amazed at how easy it was and I decided that all of my past failures with bread have to do with one little thing, water temperature.  I don’t think I ever checked the temperature of the water before mixing it with the yeast. Now I know.

Getting back to the bread….yeast, sugar and water mixed with flour, salt and sugar after it foams.  Add warm water and oil, knead and leave it alone to rise.  But it in a cast iron skillet to rise again.  The recipe calls for olives but Hubby isn’t a big fan so we substituted onions and I threw on some crumbled bacon with the halved cherry tomatoes.  I can’t tell you how much the bread lover in me liked this.


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© Karen Schaeffer and At Least Twice A Week, 2009-2010. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Karen Schaeffer and At Least Twice A Week with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.